Another day, another new restaurant. This time it was a popular Malaysian place in San Jose, Layang Layang. It felt like I completely missed on the place since most of my colleagues seemed to have been there more than once. We had a big party and needed reservations to get us all accomodated on time. The place is unobtrusive on the outside and funky on the inside. Nothing fancy but just Malay stuff around the place to enhance the feel of eating Malay food.
For those not familiar with Malaysian cuisine, it feels like the best mix of Indian and Thai flavors with a dash of Chinese to it. And it definitely tastes great. It is spicy, uses a lot of Indian flavors and fills up a hungry stomach very well. And yes, it is extremely greasy which adds to the allure of being a rare treat worth cherishing.
I ordered the Roti Kanai appetizer which came in steaming hot. The roti is really the south Indian parotta sold in Indian stores in the frozen food section. The peanut sauce was well spiced and great to go with the roti. There were a bunch of vegetarian choices as an entree. The entree I had chosen was my typical Malay choice- pineapple friend rice without egg and mushroom. I didnt want to pick a specific spice level opting to go with the house chosen level. It turned out to be a wise choice. The dish was well balanced and arrived as anticipated on a pineapple shell. It tasted great with all the raisins, pineapple pieces and cashews tossed in. I loved every morsel of it.
Dessert appeared tempting but I was full and chose to leave it for another day and another review. This trip also reminded me that I need to make one to Banana Leaf, the most popular Malaysian place in town. I have almost forgotten their flavors. One thing not forgotten about Banana Leaf- the wait!
Ambience: 4/5. Nothing fancy although an obvious attempt has been made to make it unique.
Service: 4/5. For a big party, they worked relatively fast to bring food in as quickly as possible. A bigger kitchen would have done a better job but it was not a drag.
Food: 4.5/5. Hard to find fault with my safe choices but they were done well.
Price: 4/5. The appetizers appear cheap at $2.95 – $3.95 but when you consider that I got a parotta for $3, it does seem pricey. Overall, the lunch was not the cheapest but on par with other sit down lunch places in the area.
Overall: 4/5. A future trip might tilt the scales higher or lower as I hope to be a tad more adventurous in my choices.